My Granddaughter, Olivia, dancing on Christmas Eve

When my three daughters were young, one of their favorite carols was “The Twelve Days of Christmas.” They would often lip synch and dance around our living room, making us laugh out loud to their version of calling birds and lords a-leaping. (A tradition now carried on by my grandchildren). My girls  were delighted when I proposed one year that we celebrate for all twelve days of Christmas instead of just one. While most of the gifts would still came on Christmas day, the idea was to give little personal presents like a love note on a pillow or doing a chore without grumbling as we made our way through to January sixth, the feast of the Epiphany.  Ever since that first year, I stretch out the season with family dinners, little unexpected kindnesses, and giving myself what I need most ~ time to reflect and ponder the Presence that has gifted my life all year. I find these twelve days enormously relaxing and beautiful. I slow down, laugh more, make time to walk on the beach, talk to old friends, write and ponder the many gifts I have given and received.  This precious time of reflection and prayer not only benefits me but also the people currently on my prayer list who are remembered especially during my daily meditations.  I invite you to follow my posts these next twelve days as I walk  through yet another opportunity to open myself to the spaciousness and depth of the Incarnation, “God with us.”